NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2018A-0132

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Program Information for 2018A-0132


PI: Michael Mommert, Northern Arizona U., Michael.Mommert@nau.edu
Address: Department of Physics and Astronomy, PO Box 6010, Flagstaff, AZ 86011 US

CoI: David E Trilling, Northern Arizona U.
CoI: Nicholas Moskovitz, Lowell Observatory
CoI: Matthew M Knight, U. of Maryland

Title: Systematic Characterization and Monitoring of Potentially Active Asteroids

Abstract: ``Active asteroids'' are asteroidal objects that display transient comet-like activity for a variety of reasons. Natural candidates for active asteroids are seemingly inactive cometary nuclei (``dormant comets'') and asteroids that have unusually close encounters with the Sun that are subject to thermal disruption. In a NASA-funded program, we monitor a sample of 124 dormant comets and near-Sun asteroids using different observatories in order to characterize these populations and search for activity. {bf Here, we propose to supplement this program with 2 nights of SOAR/Goodman imaging of about 24 of our sample targets. We will (1) measure BVRI colors for 8 targets during their peak observability in the southern hemisphere and (2) perform brightness monitoring in V of the remaining targets while they are mostly inaccessible to our other telescopes.} The results from this program will inform estimates of the volatile content of the asteroid population, asteroid disruption models, and asteroid material properties. We will test models concerning the evolution of comets and near-Sun asteroids.

Program Type: Standard/Solar System

Scheduled Nights:
Run 1 (2018A):  SOAR/Goodman -- 1n on Feb 01 2018
Run 2 (2018A):  SOAR/Goodman -- 1n on Jun 29 2018


National Optical Astronomy Observatory, 950 North Cherry Avenue, P.O. Box 26732, Tucson, Arizona 85726, Phone: (520) 318-8000, Fax: (520) 318-8360



NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   2018A-0132

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